Pathy 17T Paint Project Help

Discussion in 'Boat Yard Basics' started by kaioticone, Sep 11, 2010.

  1. kaioticone

    kaioticone I Love!

    Hello, I'm new to forums and recently picked up a 1998 Pathfinder 17T. I would like to start by sincerely thanking anyone who contributes to this thread, as I know time is a high priced commodity these days. So thank you.

    My overall goal for the project is to bring the boat as close to show room quality as possible with out braking my bank.



    I recently had all fiberglass imperfections fixed (1020$ for 12 hours of work) Top Side Only, however the bottom, as any extremely shallow running skiff has some very deep scrapes you can catch your finger nail on.

    Question #1
    Now that I have the top side fiber glass all in perfect order, I'm just curious what I should get to fill the bad scrapes on the bottom prior to prepping for paint. (I purchased Polyurethane Sealant, but after I got home and thought about it there is probably something a lot better out there.)

    From what I understand from reading others' posts, prep work prior to painting is extremely important. I bought three bottles of Sno-Bol, which is a strong cleaner with some strong chemicals and from what I understand cleaning your boat a few times with that will prep it perfectly for painting.

    Question #2
    Prior to cleaning with Sno-Bol, should I completely Sand the hull? Then Clean, then Paint? Or clean, then sand, then paint? Or am I going the wrong way with this project already. Forgive my ignorance.

    I really want the hull to be Black, with an nice professional looking shine. Then I want the top to be the whitest white possible. Kind of like the color of a Florescent Bulb. So Florescent White?

    If more photo's are required to better facilitate my questions just ask and i will have them up soon as I read the post.

    Thank you for your time.
  2. firecat1981

    firecat1981 BBA Counselor

    For filling imperfection you can make up fairing putty. It's epoxy resin mixed with a light weight thickening compound or fairing compound. Once mixed up you can apply it with a putty knife and then sand it smooth. They have similar stuff available in tubes now but I don't know how good it is.

    Be very careful with what you apply to the bottom cause if you plan to use epoxy paint, and it is a good option, then alot of them have problems bonding to polyurethane. Decide what paint you will use then find the correct primer/sealer for it.

    No, clean the hull first with soap and water, otherwise when you are sanding you will be grinding all the dirt into the surface. It's kinda like rinsing your car with water before scrubbing it with soap. You don't need anything fancy, dish soap and water will do a great job and then just wipe it with acetone before applying any coatings.

    Remember there are no stupid questions....... ;)

  3. FlatCat

    FlatCat Well-Known Member

    Good results will require lots of prep and a good catalyzed 2 part paint.
    There are guys on here with way more experience than me, but i would guess a min of 50 hours of labor to get decent results. Maybe a lot more depending on de-rigging time and facility/plan to lift and work on bottom.
  4. paint it black

    paint it black Paddling away...

    I highly suggest Awlgrip. Especially with black

    I wouldn't mess with anything else.
    Maybe Sterling, but that's it.
    Wash it down with soap and water.
    Prep the surface by sanding it with 150-220 grit sand paper.
    Once it's done sanded and you have filled the scratches with a fairing compound, preclean the surface with a wax and grease remover.
    Then spray away.

    Awlgrip is known for running very easily, so a trick a lot of people do is put a couple drops of awlgrip accelerator.
    Help it tack up quicker so it won't have time to sag or run.
  5. TomFL

    TomFL Well-Known Member

    I dunno, I'm torn on this one.

    First off, great boat!

    That hull, because of it's shallow-running tendencies (and the driver's tendencies of "let's see if it'll run through this...") tends to get scraped up on the bottom. It's just the nature of the beast.

    If you paint, particularly if you change the color to something of contrast, a year or two from now you'll be worse off than you are today because you'll compromise the paint instead of scraping the gelcoat.

    Like if you have a grey hull and paint it yellow, which would look cool until you get one scrape in it and see grey. Or black over grey.

    If you do decide to paint the hull, or just to the waterline, I've done some research on this lately and interlux makes a 2-part epoxy that is supposed to be as hard as gelcoat, has teflon in it, and is specifically made for trailered and rack-stored boats. It's called Interlux VC performance epoxy, and I'm about to do the bottom of my hull with it within the next 2 weeks.

    Trouble is, it only comes in white.

    Before you paint the deck in "the whitest white" consider for a moment the amount of glare on your eyes that a white deck puts out. A toned down color like a very light sea foam, or really any shade of color will break that glare considerably and in the long run you just might be happier with it's performance and clean look tradeoff vs just the looks of the bright white.

    Granted, I wouldn't paint the sides black and then the deck seafoam, but you get my point.

    My $.02 would be to address any imperfections in that hull bottom and buff and wax the heck out of the topside. That hull is not that old and will come out awesome.

    Keep us posted on whatever you do

  6. paint it black

    paint it black Paddling away...

    Although Tom stated a very valid post above, I still say to paint it black!
    Awlgrip is tough.
    And will look great for years to come.

    I plan on painting my hull in black Awlgrip in the future.
    I'm going to block the crap out of the hull sides to get rid of any imperfections or waves, and spray it with black Awlgrip.

    I do plan on redoing the non-skid soon.
    I'm probably going to do the nonskid in a light grey to kill the glare.
    I suggest you don't go with brightest white.

    I forgot my sunglasses once, and I had a pounding headache within 5 minutes.
  7. TomFL

    TomFL Well-Known Member

    He's biased towards painting it black.. Just look at his screen name ;)

    But I'll agree, it would look awesome in black! Pretty much anything does, though. It's the new black....

  8. kaioticone

    kaioticone I Love!

    That is a very good point, I didn't really think about the effect such a white top paint would bring. I will definitely go with something a little different. Perhaps a gray like "Paint-it-Black" mentioned. But I will have to rethink that for a little and see what I come up with.

    [Question 1] *Edit* - It worked decently * So I got my answer. :)
    I purchased some gew-gone for all the stickers, is that the best stuff to use? Not that I truly dislike the stickers, it's just they aren't mine, so they gotta go.

    Also, I saw other posts where they said there was some nice epoxy paints that could somewhat withstand oyster bars - think it was the Awlgrip. However, I wouldn't have any problems just doing the sides in black, leaving the bottom white, I still want to patch the scrapes and re-paint the bottom white, because as most pathfinders 17T's, it's sort of an off/grayish/white type color which I'm sure you're well aware of TomFL.

    So you know you helped influence my decision to purchase my Pathfinder, I read all of  your posts and watched the videos you had up.

    [Question 2]
    Could someone point out what I should get to repair the bottom? Here is the site I plan to get it from, in-less otherwise told. Putties&category=528&refine=1&page=GRID

    Then for my final [Question] of this post. I would imagine I'm going to be removing the boat from the trailer, should I purchase stands like the ones on this site: or is there no need? I can move the boat around quite well on the trailer by myself.

    But priority one is getting what I need to fix the bottom.

    Thanks again!
  9. paint it black

    paint it black Paddling away...

    I'd be careful with that goo gone stuff. lol
    I tried some on my old tri hull project skiff.
    And I got some in a chip in the gel coat and it softened up the gelcoat.
  10. mark_gardner

    mark_gardner I Love!

    yeah i would definitely reconsider your thoughts on painting the top bright white, the glare is gonna kill you, your better off with an off-white and it'll look just as good if not better :cool:
  11. TomFL

    TomFL Well-Known Member

    I think Brett (or a lot of other forum members for that matter) ould offer up a better answer on a product to repair the bottom better than I could.

    As far as the stands, if I were you I'd keep an eye on craigslist and ebay as these things are a dime a dozen at times. You might even be able to find a marina locally that you could rent some from cheaply? Once you buy them, what are you going to do with them after you're done, right?

    Lastly, just how bad of condition is the boat's surface? Is this something that you're doing mostly to change the color and/or make it look shiny-new, or is it something that really needs to be done?

  12. Brett

    Brett > PRO STAFF <

    I can't offer a useful opinion until I see the problem.
    I use Marine-Tex to repair most minor dings and scratches
    when repainting a hull. Easy to use, easy to sand.
  13. kaioticone

    kaioticone I Love!

    The topside of the boat had significant spider cracks down the sides, the drain holes were in bad shape, and there appeared to be an oddly placed drill whole in the deck near the side console. I had all topside imperfections professionally fixed.

    **So everyone knows the stringers on this boat were professionally fixed as well :) **

    The 1700T I guess had two cockpit drain holes that were suppose to drain to the exterior of the boat, however the original owner of the boat removed the side draining tubes/plugs, and made it where the cockpit drain holes go to the bilge. Thus leaving slight smudge marks on both sides of the boat where the drain holes/plugs use to be.

    As for the bottom, in the front of the hull, there are two symmetrical repairs, it looks as though they did not have the trailer far enough down into the water, and attempted to drive on the trailer, punching two holes in the hull. I didn't notice them when I first purchased the boat but even had I seen them, I still would have purchased it, I got a great deal on the boat. Anyhow the repair job on those two appearant trailer puncture wounds wasn't the greatest, so the gentleman re-did them and got it looking nice. However they are big obvious blemishes just under the bow on both sides. (Hull is off white/grayish - and was repaired with white epoxy) - I can understand as most think the boat is white until you put something white next to it. Then for the bottom, there are as any shallow running boat, many scrapes, and a few chips a bit smaller than 1"x1". I figured since I'm going to paint the bottom I should definitely fill the imperfections.

    Technically none of my planned modifications are truly needed, and strictly cosmetic. As nothing henders the boat's function. But as it's my first boat, and I really really love everything about the boat, ever since I bought it I've been telling myself to invest in this thing and try my hardest to get it to that show room condition. I want it to shine, like the new boats you see coming off the production line.

    I plan to do all the prep work myself, then have someone in the business guide me through the paint process, through seeking information I've come across someone willing to help me out when I paint, provided I make it worth their while. But still I'll need to get the products / Tools / Location to do the work and so on. I have the room on the side of my house, so just figuring a way to make the bottom accessible, or more accessible; that is why I was considering the stands.

    You make a very valid point with the stands, I will look into possibly renting some, or picking some up for cheap second hand somewhere.

    So far I'm thinking Top Side Silver/Gray.
    Sides of the boat Black, with white Pathfinder Logo.
    Bottom I might go with the Silver/Gray as well, as it would better match the original color of the hull.

    As for the gew gone, I hope I haven't caused any damage, I managed to get all but two of the stickers off with it. I did have one spot where there was slight cracking, about the size and shape of a quarter, I don't think I got any of the gew gone in there however it was close to where I applied it.

    *Brett* I will post pictures tomorrow morning of all issues I am considering repairing. I don't feel that any are serious or in need of immediate repair, I'd just like to fix them prior to painting.

    **Thanks for all the input**
  14. paint it black

    paint it black Paddling away...

    I highly suggest Awlgrip. It will shine, and shine for years.
    Just be careful, for it runs rather easily.
    Wait the proper flash time, and make sure you're spraying it properly.
    It's a relatively small skiff, so I'd say walk the hull when spraying.
    It's much easier to prevent runs, and will also give a nice even coat to the whole skiff.

    "Walking" it is a method used by us "custom painters" to spray kandy paint on cars.
    Kandy paint is about as hard as it gets when spraying.
    It's just a translucent tint that is sprayed over a base color to get the depth and tone that is desired.
    I walk cars when I spray kandy so that there aren't any darker areas caused by overlapping on the strokes.

    And the reason why I say to walk the Awlgrip is because when you overlap, you're more likely to get runs on the overlapped areas.

    By walk, I mean start at the back and spray a line as you walk to the bow.
    Then move down a bit and walk back from the bow to the stern, and etc.

    Sounds complicated, but it's really not.
    It even makes spraying time much faster.

    Get a good HVLP gravity spray gun.
    I like my Sata for shooting Awlgrip, but you'll be fine with a cheaper spray gun.
    Personally, I like to spray with a 1.3 tip.
    One can also use a 1.4 tip, but I wouldn't venture to any other sizes.

    A relatively cheap, but really good spray gun is a "Maxim" from U-POL.
    It's about $125, and it sprays really great.
    It has saved my ass a few times when other guns have taken a crap on me during a paint job.

    Hope this helps,